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Sentence for sex offender extended

Merrick Seaman

A convicted sex offender will spend an additional nine months behind bars after stabbing a fellow Westgate inmate in the eye with a pen.

Merrick Seaman, 31, pleaded guilty to wounding during an incident on July 15 last year while he was serving an eight-year sentence for sexually assaulting a five-year-old girl.

The court had heard that the complainant, Stanley Gibbons, had been watching television and reading a book in a recreational area at the prison when Seaman changed the channel.

When Gibbons changed the channel back, Seaman produced a pen and stabbed his right eye, leading to a struggle.

The court heard that the complainant has complained about some ongoing issues, but did not lose sight in the affected eye.

Seaman later admitted the attack, but told the court that he acted because he felt threatened after the complainant called him names and clenched his fists.

“I’m very sorry,” he said. “I’m a small guy. In Westgate, there are a lot of big guys. Basically, I defended myself.

“I didn’t go up to him and stab him out of the blue. He came to me in a threatening manner.

“If it happened again, I would go to an officer. I guess I have to try harder.”

Prosecutors requested that any sentence run consecutively with Seaman’s current term of imprisonment, noting that his earliest possible date of release for that incident would be in December 2017.

Senior Magistrate Juan Wolffe sentenced Seaman to nine months in prison for the attack, adding that the sentences should run consecutively.

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